Title: Converting university knowledge into value: how conceptual frameworks contribute to the understanding of the third mission role of European universities

Authors: Todd Davey

Addresses: Munich Business School, Elsenheimerstraße 61, 80687 München, Germany; Science-to-Business Marketing Research Centre, Johann Krane Weg 27, 48149 Münster, Germany

Abstract: The importance of universities in the movement of western economies from industrial to knowledge-driven economies is increasingly recognised, there has been a greater focus by policy makers and academics on the university's role. Resultantly, a number of conceptual frameworks have been created to capture this changing role, however, there remains a lack of clarity as to how the modern university engages a set of external stakeholders, resulting in a 'tangling' of conceptual frameworks explaining this 'third mission' paradigm. This article untangles these third mission concepts highlighting four areas of variance: the focus on public versus private good, the relation to university-business cooperation and entrepreneurship, the relation to theory and the stakeholder perspective taken by the frameworks. In doing so, it provides insight into how universities interact externally to convert their knowledge into value and make a case for a proactive approach to the third mission by university managers.

Keywords: triple helix; entrepreneurial university; regional innovation systems; RISs; university-business cooperation; UBC; technology and knowledge transfer; valorisation; university; stakeholder theory.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTTC.2017.084637

International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, 2017 Vol.15 No.1, pp.65 - 96

Accepted: 27 Dec 2016
Published online: 31 May 2017 *

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